Monday, February 3, 2014

White Dwarf & Warhammer Visions #1

So White Dwarf and Warhammer Visions dropped last weekend to be scrutinised by the gaming public for any signs of weakness or deformity. It seems more than a few advocate they be abandoned on the side of Mount Taygetos already. I would not be among this group, and here's why.

It's certainly in vogue to bash GW products at any and every opportunity. Those that do so do it with a frothing zeal akin to a medieval flagellant. It's a special kind of hate. Not that such venom is without grounds, and there are also those who are less rabid and give negative yet considered opinions, but we won't go into that today. Today we talk about the new magazines from Games Workshop.

White Dwarf weekly
I found this to be an enjoyable read. It's 32 pages featuring new models, books and such, paint splatter, Jervis Johnson's delightful ramblings, a high view tyranid article, rules for Belegar Ironhammer, designer's notes on the new dwarves and various little tit-bits such as ask Grombrindal, paint tips and readers model of the week. The new 'Sprues and Glue' article, focuses on the assembly side of things and had some nice tips such as storing your plastic glue upside down to stop it drying out in the nozzle. There are no in-depth articles on the best strategies for tyranids in hardcore tournament play, and let's be frank, there never will be. White Dwarf is generally not aimed at the long-standing player or modeller. It's a light read about what's getting released this week and a few other bits and bobs, but I like the weekly format and it enables GW to be a little more agile with their releases.

I am fervently hoping we'll see new rules and scenarios in this magazine regularly. If Belegar is included in the dwarf book I would be most put out, but I have a feeling he will be. I'd love to see a new beastman unit one week, a new scenario the next, then maybe a vampire counts special character. That kind of thing would make me quite the happy gent. Fingers crossed, but so far, so good.

Warhammer Visions
I was a little perplexed at the reaction to this one. At a huge 230 pages it's a big momma. There are hobby articles, a battle report, the fantastic armies on parade, some ads it must be said, but mostly pages and pages of miniatures. This has provoked a storm of disappointment from the net. I chuckled pretty hard at one review. The commentator turned the pages like a man folding used toilet paper, disgust oozing out of every word. "Look!! Look at it!! It's all miniatures! Loads of photos of miniatures! I've seen this one before! See!! It's a zoom shot from two pages ago!!! (okay, that's a little lame, granted) This magazine is worse than Hitler!!! YeeaaaaaaaagggghhhH!!!" Okay, maybe he didn't use those EXACT words, but you get the jist.

I'm primarily a hobby guy, and a magazine that presents me with over 200 pages of minature porn every month is a good, good thing. All the deliciousness of the best GW miniatures from around the world without even having to trawl the net. I don't think we'll get a good feel for the magazine until next month though, as there is a lot of re-hash of the tyranids from last month. I do worry about the target audience too, it's appeal is primarily to the modellers and painters, many of whom already have access to the better miniature painting websites and may not feel the need to buy it.

But for me, as long as I keep seeing stuff I've not seen online already, I'm in, for now. I do like to pour over an actual magazine, call me old fashioned. It's a bit pricey, for sure, but I'll give it a go to see how it develops.

So there you have it. A tentative thumbs up from me on both counts. I may be an army of one.

Wayland Games

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